As the Olympic torch arrives in Moscow ahead of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, Amnesty International is launching a worldwide campaign to highlight Russia’s increasingly deplorable human rights record.
“The Olympic flame can throw light on the human rights violations that the authorities would prefer to hide behind the celebratory decorations. It is important that all those with a stake in the Games are aware of restrictions placed by the Russian authorities on civil society and ordinary citizens, and use their influence to oppose them,” said John Dalhuisen, Europe and Central Asia Program Director.
With the arrival of the Olympic flame in Moscow and the start of its journey to Sochi on 7 October, hundreds of thousands of Amnesty International members will stage a series of events and protests worldwide.
Supporters from Ottawa through to Puerto Rico, Warsaw, Paris, Brussels and Moscow are organizing vigils, flash mobs and pickets in public places and in front of Russian embassies to raise awareness about the range of violations to the rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly in Russia.